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tv   Martin Bashir  MSNBC  November 15, 2012 4:00pm-5:00pm EST

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did was focus on certain members of his base coalition, give them extraordinary financial gifts from the government. >> some of the turnout in urban areas gave president obama the big margin to win this race. >> it grandfathered in the second amendment today. oh, and don't forget the ammunition. >> i look sadly for impeachment. i look for sandal, for ugliness which we don't need in this country. joots just very difficult to beat santa claus. >> i mean it's a proven political strategy, which is give a bunch of money from the government to a group and guess what? they'll vote for you. >> where you been boy? >> it was a bit of a shock when we didn't win. >> i think obama bought this election. >> there's now speculation that voter fraud took place. >> here is the tip of the day, be very skeptical when watching any news program in america. >> not familiar with precisely with exactly what i said but i stand by what i said whatever it was. ♪ let's get it on
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>> good afternoon and welcome to ten days since the president's resounding and emphatic re-election. and in most cases an electoral loss would provide a wake-up call for the defeated party. but in the case of mitt romney, it appears to have opened the door to another dimension, a dimension of sound, a dimension of sight, a dimension of mind. a sort of twilight zone. in the realm of reality, there is the president who has just left new york's staten island touring areas damaged by the storm and pledging much needed federal support. and then there is the shadow realm where republicans are still stumbling over their loss by doubling down on the very backward, twisted, inverted views that proved to be their undoing. case in point, mitt romney. who told his top donors on a conference call that the president only won by doling out freebies to key constituencies. >> what the president's campaign
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did was focus on certain members of his base coalition, give them extraordinary financial gifts from the government, and then work very aggressively to turn them out to vote. >> that base coalition, of course, including young voters, african-americans, and hispanics. >> what the president did is he gave them two things. one, he gave them a big gift on immigration with the dream act, am ness it -- amnesty program. number two, put in place obama care which is $10,000 a family. it's a proven political strategy, chi is give a bunch of money from the government to a group and, guess what? they will vote for you. >> nbc's peter alexander reached out to the campaign and was told they confirmed the authenticity of the recording november 14th. quote, governor romney was simply elaborating on what obama
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senior strais david axelrod had said about the obama campaign's evident to target key demographics, most specifically women. that was the other demographic targeted by the president bought with free birth control obviously. as for paul ryan, he just can't believe urban americans managed to leave their sad, cramped apartments and tenments and made the long trek to the voting booth. >> i think the surprise was some of the turnout. some of the turnout especially in urban areas which definitely gave president obama the big margin to win this race. >> apparently mr. ryan forgot his opponents were giving out free birth control. should have seen that coming. now, some in the gop are trying to escape this whirling vortex of deep denial and blame, especially those looking to run in 2016. louisiana governor bobby jindal was out at a mike within hours. >> i absolutely reject that notion, that description. i think that's absolutely wrong.
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i don't think that represents where we are as a party and where we're going as a party. >> well, into which dimension the party is headed still remains very much up for question. let's get right to our panel. here in new york joy reid is the managing editor of msnbc contributor ari melber is a columnist for "the nation." and in washington msnbc contributor jared bernstein, a senior fellow and former economist for vice president joe biden. ari, if i can start with you, let's set aside for the moment the racism and the contempt for his fellow americans. don't these kind of views ethically disqualify someone for the highest office in the land? i mean, e dee amin had a warmer attitude toward his electorate and he is said to have eaten some of them.
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>> i didn't expect the cannibalism right out of the gate. i agree with your premise, what kind of view not only of government but of society is this? you go out and ask the people who have fema helping them respond to the hurricane, you ask them if they're getting gifts? you know, you ask people who look to our cops and our firefighters and our soldiers and our teachers -- >> many of whom's life savings have been invested in properties and have lost everything through no fault of their own. >> right. you ask them what we do as a society, as a nation, or, yes, as a government together, we have to look out for each other. i think we just had a remarkable election that really distilled these ideas down because it was one of the colder, more individualistic arguments we've ever heard from the modern republican party. they really shrunk it down to me, to just it's all about me and i'm out here alone and good luck if you're rich and good luck if you're poor. you got to do it on your own. on the other side, we heard something from the president about coming together and about using our communal power
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together often through the government. so what you heard from romney there, which was so really disgusting, was that his entire view of this is sort of just that it's an he can change. it's just a transaction. he's wrong on a bunch of other facts i'm sure we can get to, but to take a step back, the whole philosophy is a transactional exchange, nothing in there that's patriotic, nothing in there that's communal. >> nothing xas gnat. joy, romney seems to be confused by the fact that the lector yacht found him to be a liar, bankrupt of policies, and a man that the nation did not want to lead. the people chose against him. is there not something terribly ironic about a man blaming the electorate for ejecting him? >> it's not me, it's you. that's really what he's essentially saying. and i do agree with ari that sadly i think that mitt romney represents a few that is far more prevalent in the party than bobby jindal or that we would like to admit because there is a
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part of the republican base that does believe that government is little more than some evil pied piper luring the weak-minded around with sweeties to entrap them in dependency. and that's a belief that is far more common than mitt romney. it's kind of ironic it was so hard for him to get friendly with the base when he agrees with them about that, and throughout the campaign you saw him after the 47% video try to mask that belief by saying i care about the 100%, but, no, when he's speaking in these off the cuff moments -- >> he does not care about the 100%. >> exactly. >> jared, romney's crude attempt to tie certain voting blocs to what he calls gifts that he claims the president promised them is not only contemptuous and divisive, it's also wrong, isn't it? because the people who benefit most from government are neither dark skinned nor are they students. >> no question about it. if you look at governor romney's agenda, he was poised to deliver even more goodies to folks at
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the top of the scale. by the way, folks not unlike himself who are paying 14% tax rate -- >> 9%, jared, when you accommodate the fact that he voluntarily refused to take his deductions for charitable gifts. >> by the way, if you're talking about private equity, they make all their leverage over debt financing, which is forgiven -- which is excluded from the tax base. but here is the thing, the economics are all wrong. basically what you heard from mitt romney is as ari and joy have said, i thought they nailed a lot of the kind of ethical behavioral political piece on this. on the economics, really what you're talking about, and he actually referred specifically to immigration, to college tuition, to health care. these are the kinds of investments that we actually need to make the -- to give the folks who are disadvantaged from the starting gate a fair chance to make it in this society. nobody is giving them gifts that
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are going to at the end of the day provide them with everything they need for a good life. but if you look at a kid who comes from the bottom half of the income scale just based on the economics, they face real barriers getting to college. so it's smart to invest in immigration reform, in college access for kids like that. that's good economics. >> to jared's point, any civilized society considers health care, supporting people with education as being valuable, doesn't it? >> right. it's valuable, and that is the supreme hypocrisy. let's just remember he's talking to his donors. he's talking to the investors in his campaign who, and this is just how it works, who also expect to get something out of his campaign, something out of the government. i mean, that's the problem here and that's been the problem throughout this year. i am in that sense, you know, i'm surprised he was so revealing after getting busted once before, but arrogance is a powerful force. here is the thing, he's talking to people who invest in
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campaigns to get something out of it. the idea we go to battle in democracy and then expect certain outcomes because we think they're good for us or good for everyone is what democracy is all about. his disdain for that is a problem. that's the last point. what came through to me in the recording that you played was the sense of pity and it reminds me of something leon said about the christian right. they combine the pity of the minority with the power of the majority. you know, i know he got beat bad. i know he's got the sour grapes there in his cabinet, but, look, he feels so sorry for himself and these people on the call and they're complaining about, you know, what students get in debt, like that's the biggest problem in the economy? it's crazy. >> there's also an irony here, too, because mitt romney represents the forces within our society who get, if you want to call them gifts, the most gifts. the defense industry, he was prepared to say he will increase the deficit to give you more. the elderly who mainly voted for mitt romney, if you want to look at the apportionment of government spending, get a far
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disproportionate share. most of the quote, unquote gift if you want to call it that, they're mostly going to the people who voted for mitt romney, red states who are basket cases, wards of the blue states. >> we're not against that. >> jared, final word to you. >> from the very beginning, it always looked to me like mitt romney and his minions looked down at the american economy and decided rich people don't have enough, and i just think that's not the economic analysis that's going to move this country forward. >> absolutely. >> and i'll bet he wasn't saying that when the olympics were asking for gifts from the federal government. >> of course not, absolutely not. joy reid, ari melber, jared bernstein, i wish we had more time. thank you all. neck, proof that john mccain may be the biggest hypocrite in washington, and in that town, that is saying something. stay with us. i'm only in my 60's...
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this is not simply a cover-up of a third-rate burglary. >> if you want to know who is responsible in this town, buy yourself a mirror. >> this is not only a tragedy, it's a perfect example of malfeasance at the state department. >> that was just a quick sample from today's house foreign affairs hearings on the benghazi attacks of 9/11. it follows the familiar pattern with republicans throw around words like malfeasance or lie but without any actual facts. the ringleader on this occasion is senator john mccain. the president's opponent four years ago had plenty of time to push the idea of a scandal during a news conference wednesday, and then again during a speech from the senate floor just after the president had
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addressed the issue himself. yet that forced mr. mccain and other republicans to skip a closed door classified briefing on the attacks where presumably most of his questions would have been answered. the reason? well, there are no cameras in closed door meetings. for more we head to washington and congressman charles rangel of new york. good afternoon. >> hi, martin, good to be back with you. >> republican senator susan collins chided mr. mccain for his absence at wednesday's meeting. she said his request for a new committee to investigate benghazi is, and i'm quoting, not necessary. what is your assessment of mr. mccain's attacks on the president? >> i am surprised, and i'm disappointed. i think that senator mccain has earned the respect of this great country in being able to tell through his own personal experiences the enemies of the united states of america. and to a lesser extent the same could be said by senator graham.
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for them to see that we have been attacked by enemies of the united states, our embassy and therefore the united states is being attacked, and sunsinstead joining in and seeing who the enemy was to find them and to bring them to justice, they have seen fit to jointly want to destroy the political career of an ambassador that was merely repeating the intelligence that was given to her. this is not what is expected of our heroes. clearly when a family, america, is under attack, you don't really take sides of the attacker and start charging malfeasance to the commander in chief. >> but, mr. rangel, mr. mccain, senator mccain says he wants more information, so he does a press conference. he goes to the floor of the senate. he appears on the "today" show. but he doesn't attend the
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briefing where he might have got some answers to his questions. >> well, i have to admit that a lot of us are addicted to the television screens rather than to the facts in this case, but i would hope that the senators would reconsider and to recognize that all america could easily join with them if collectively we push the committees of jurisdiction to find as soon as possible who is responsible, whether it could have been corrected, and what we can do to avoid this in the future. but the whole idea of attacking the united nations ambassador, i share the outrage of president obama, but even more the whole idea that he has inferred that he's covered this up is even more outrageous to do that when he should be defending our country.
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>> i want to play you something mr. mccain said nearly eight years ago after president bush's re-election. it was his response to the critics of condoleezza rice during her senate confirmation for secretary of state. take a listen, sir. >> i wonder why we're starting this new congress with a protracted debate about a foregone conclusion. i can only conclude we're doing this for no other reason than because of lingering bitterness at the outcome of the elections. >> i can only conclude we're doing this for no other reason than lingering bitterness at the outcome of the elections. is senator mccain guilty of the self-same charge, sir? >> well, i think he's more familiar with how people who have lost would respond, but it would seem to me that it could be best served if he joins in and not attack our commander in chief until we all find out what the facts are.
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i'd like to compliment, if i'm correct, mitt romney. it seems to me that since he was briefed by the state department on the dangers we have in libya and what occurred, he has refrained from publicly condemning anyone except saying that he was in search of the facts. i think that perhaps if the senator attended more meeting where information was given as to what happened at benghazi, that he, too, might be able to say let the facts speak for themselves, but until that happens, don't just muddy the waters. it's not fair to our president, but more importantly, it's not fair to our country. we know who the enemies are and it's not the president. it's those people that attacked our embassy. >> well said. congressman charles rangel, thank you, sir. stay with us. much more ahead. [ timers ringing ]
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at this hour, violence in gaza continues to escalate as israeli prime minister benjamin innocent says he's prepa innocent says he's prepared to significantly escalate action. the state department is asking ma mass to stop rocket attacks saying israel has the right to defend itself. we're on the ground in gaza. hamas has vowed to continue what it calls its resistance. there have been anti-israeli demonstrations in egypt. is this conflict about to become something much more profound, prolonged, and serious? >> reporter: well, it certainly has the potential to, and it's important to emphasize really this chapter in a prolonged conflict between israel and the palestinians certainly has entered into a new dimension when it comes to the gaza strip. this isn't the first time they have exchanged this type of
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gunfire. in fact, we saw four years ago the operation that was unfolded, very reminiscent of what we're seeing now. that's the concern many palestinians have here. 1.5 million people in gaza bracing themselves for more violence. the concern is whether israel will launch a ground offensive. there is precedence for it. that's why many palestinians are fearful that in the coming days this can only get worse. a lot of people are questioning the effects of all of this. why is israel continuing to carry out these attacks if it has not been able to stop the rocket fire it set out to stop. when it launched the operation four years ago, it was precisely the same modus operandi for the same objectives. we're four years later, palestinians have rockets now reaching the southern tip of tel aviv. hamas is more entrenched. the situation has not changed for the southern part of israel
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nor for the people of gaza. the only thing that's changed is the arab spring and we're seeing a country like egypt trying to play a more active role in mediating a truce. egypt's prime minister is expected to make a trip to the gaza strip with the hopes of trying to calm the situation down and expressing his solidarity with the people of gaza. >> stay safe and thank you. we will have more on this rapidly developing situation in the days ahead. do stay with us. the day's "top lines" are coming up. [ male announcer ] it's that time of year again. time for citi price rewind. because your daughter really wants that pink castle thing. and you really don't want to pay more than you have to. only citi price rewind automatically searches for the lowest price. and if it finds one, you get refunded the difference. just use your citi card and register your purchase online. have a super sparkly day! ok. [ male announcer ] now all you need is a magic carriage.
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in the petraeus sex scandal may be a loon. >> the white house knew that petraeus was carrying on an inappropriate relationship. >> i totally forgot what i was going to say. >> this makes no sense unless your goal is to distract and discredit the military. >> best thing to do at the time was not to politicize it but to put national security first. >> he takes pictures of himself half naked and he shoots them off. this guy should be in congress. >> i have a mandate to help middle class families. >> there are ways to put revenue on the table without increasing tax rates. >> more voters agreed with me on this issue than voted for me. >> be very skeptical when watching any news program. >> the courage to face his, well, suck up fwraends in the mainstream media. make a blanket media buy up question. >> some of the turnout especially in urban areas which definitely gave president obama the big margin. >> in some parts of rural maine, there are dozens of plaque people who came in to vote but
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nobody in tune flu them. >> what would that be, the united states of caucasia. >> who is going to give them things? president obama. >> give them extraordinary financial gifts from the gift. >> it's absolutely wrong. i don't think that of that represents where we are as a party and where we're going. >> this picture before you is worth millions of votes. >> i love you women. >> what actually can republicans do to win votes? >> they have to frame their arguments through the prism of the vagina. >> let's get right to our panel. krystal ball is my colleague. michael scherer is white house correspondent for "time" magazine and msnbc contributor goldie taylor is with us, too. krystal, i'm not a gynecologist so i'm not going to look at things through that particular prism. but please tell me what you think of this line from the romney tapes. are you ready for it? >> i'm ready. >> okay. here it is.
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free contraceptives were very big with young college-aged women. the man is a genius. >> well, here is what's so funny to me about that line, too. you heard from republicans during the campaign, oh, democrats are just reducing women down to abortions and birth control, but now apparently ex post facto in the analysis, they desaied women were just voting on contraceptives and birth control. they should have just been sending out free condoms. >> another choice bit from mr. romney. take a listen, goldie. >> the president's campaign focused on certain members of his base coalition, give them extraordinary financial gifts from the government, and then work very aggressively to turn them out to vote. >> goldie, when mr. romney refers to, quote, certain members of the president's base coalition, is he referring, for example, to voters with postgraduate degrees because the
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president did carry those folks by a margin of 13 percentage points. >> i think he means me. >> oh. >> i think he means me. i think he means my family. i think he means the people who live on my block. unfortunately, during the campaign we heard mitt romney's initial 47% remarks. you know, the infamous remarks about that. he said at that time he was inartful in his wording. well now, we know he was masterfully precise. he said exactly what he wanted to say. now the campaign is over and he decided he could say it again. what is surprising to me is so many republicans today, people like bobby jindal and others are out there condemning mitt romney for using this kind of language. where were they when the same feckless and rootless candidate was on the xran trail the last 18 months. i'm still waiting for my cadillac, i'd like my 40 acres and a mule. >> my cell phone?
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>> my obama phone is working just fine. but to say that taking control of student loan interest rates, that making sure that women have access to meaningful health care such as birth control, saying that people who, you know, have access to free school lunches when they aren't able to afford them for themselves, so say that that does not benefit all of us -- >> bribery. >> it's simply unconscionable. i guess we have to be really, really happy he gave barack obama the best gift of all, himself as a candidate. >> he did. michael, mr. romney seems incapable of understanding a very simple truth, the electorate didn't like him, they didn't like his policies, but he's moaning because he got thrashed. i thought elections were about accepting the decision of the electorate. is that not the case now? >> yeah, obviously this has been a tough time for mitt romney. >> putting it mildly. >> i wouldn't have imagined two or three years ago mitt romney,
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who was then, you know, sort of rolling his eyes at sort of the fox news of the republican party saying something out of out of this maker/taker handbook. i think he came out of the election sort of having been churned through this conservative media prism, and that's really where his allies are right now. you haven't heard that many recriminations from conservatives since this election has happened. i think he's trying to identify with this crowd and give them what they want to hear. >> why would he continue doing that, krystal? >> it's almost like he was a really bad candidate, totally out of touch with the people. i think you have had this remarkable theme throughout his campaign where he was just taking the drudge or fox news or rush limbaugh talking points and regurgitating them, whether they were true or not, and apparently that has continued after the campaign as he tries to rationalize and figure out what the heck happened because he did not, and the republican party did not, live in the world of
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the real. some people like bobby jindal are trying to come back to some semblance of reality -- >> where was he on the stump? he was with romney at various events, said nothing about this. >> that's true. when he was asked about the 47% comments, he jest begged off and didn't weigh in. >> there you go. >> it's almost like he was waiting to throw romney under the bus. >> goldie, one of the big questions in this race for democrats was how to go at mr. romney. you know, is he a radical right wing ideologue that only cares about the rich or is he a flip-flopping moderate who only cares about the rich? do you think we know who the real romney is now? >> i think we do. i think when we listen to remarks like the 47%, when we listen to, you know, paul ryan say that, you know, they would have won but for that extraordinary urban vote, when we hear him talking about, you know, the makers versus the takers, you know, i think he's an economic bigot. i think he plays this class warfare thing to its hilt on
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people who are trying to survive, cope, and make it in the margins all for his own plinl ga political game. fortunate for us we got to see who he was before election day. >> and americans are not stupid. michael, haley barbour, the former rnc chair, made an interesting statement about rebuilding the republican party. i'll read it to you. he says we've got to give our political organizational activity a very serious proctology exam. we need to look everywhere. i guess that's where they need to start, is it? >> haley barbour is one of the smartest republicans out there with one of the most colorful ways of saying things. i think he's absolutely right. they were just worked over in terms of technology, in terms of outreach, in terms of message. there's a lot of things that republicans and really they're all saying it right now. they really have to go back to the drawing board, do a real study of what went wrong, and
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then really begin now because they have time before the next midterms, before the next presidential election, to begin to shift the party in a direction where it will be able to get some of this nonwhite male vote, which is really what the republican party needs to do. it can't -- if it gets 60% of the white male vote or the white vote next time, it's still not going to be winning the election. it has to broaden itself to these other demographics and obviously romney's comments are not going to help that in the short term. >> krystal, we began the segment by looking at things from the prism of the vagina and we ended up with the proctology exam from haley barbour. >> really come full circle. maybe they can stop insulting half the country. >> just stop it. how about it? >> thank you all so much. next, i love the '90s and why boehner and the boys should, too. stay with us. >> several states want to secede from the united states. >> leave the union. >> because 69 results of the
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election. it's so strange because i had many of those states on a list of states i would like to secede from the united states. i had proposed a bill to the congress. ♪ ♪ [ female announcer ] pop in a whole new kind of clean. with tide pods. a powerful three-in-one detergent that cleans. brightens. and fights stains just one removes more stains than the 6 next leading pacs combined pop in. stand out. without freshly-made pasta. you could also cut corners by making it without 100% real cheddar cheese. but wouldn't be stouffer's mac & cheese. just one of over 70 satisfying recipes for one from stouffer's.
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constipated? yeah. mm. some laxatives like dulcolax can cause cramps. but phillips' caplets don't. they have magnesium. for effective relief of occasional constipation. thanks. [ phillips' lady ] live the regular life. phillips'. the challenge facing republicans in the house is now stark. save face or save the american economy. do they keep their promise to grover norquist to never raise taxes and thereby allow the nation's entire economy to fall off the fiscal cliff or face reality and accept that raising taxes by just 3% on the top 2% will actually go a long way to preventing an economic crisis? you'll remember it was president clinton who enacted that 39% rate back in the 1990s and who can forget the economic devastation that ensued thereafter. joining us is former labor
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secretary robert reich, the author of "beyond outrage" and a professor of economics at uc-berkeley. i want to play you an assertion that the president made yesterday and get your response. listen to this, sir. >> we right away say 98 approximates 98% of americans will not see their taxes go up. 97% of small businesses will not see their taxes go up. if we get that in place, we are removing half of the fiscal cliff. half of the danger to our economy is removed by that single step. >> professor reich, is that true, if we take that one step, we remove half the entire danger to the u.s. economy? >> yes, absolutely, martin. because the middle class actually, their spending keeps the economy going. the rich are not the job creators in america. the truth is it's the middle class and the middle class spending that justifies to businesses expanding and creating more jobs. if the middle class is squeezed
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by additional taxes, if the middle class loses ground as they have been losing ground because the median wage today is 8% lower adjusted for inflation than it was in 2000, if the middle class continues to lose ground, the middle class can't spend. if the middle class can't spend, then we're not going to have more jobs and we're not going to have a better recovery. it's as direct and simple as that. >> excellent. okay. that's a good answer. given the precarious position we're in, history ought to provide some lessons. so i went back to your own book "after shock" where you say the 1990s boom was not the result of a tax cut. most of it followed bill clinton's 1993 tax increase. now, mitt romney has just spent two years telling us that tax cuts are all you need to stimulate the economy. is that wrong? >> absolutely wrong. supply side economics is bunk. we have seen historically not only when bill clinton raised taxes the economy did very well. george w. bush in 2001, 2003,
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cut taxes and the economy did very badly and then ultimately went really over a cliff in 2008. or more evidence for the first three decades after the second world war in the united states, the top tax rate never fell below 70% under dwight d. eisenhower, president eisenhower -- >> and yet professor, we have heard paul ryan, the so-called budget policy wonk of the house, repeatedly tell us that what we need to do is cut taxes and the economy does great. >> well, that's just simply not true. we had an election. most of the americans obviously did not believe that nonsense, and it is absolutely nonsense. there's no correlation at all between tax rates on the very top and the economy doing worse or for that matter doing much better. but here we have a huge budget deficit. the rich now have a higher percentage of total income, martin, than they have had in about 80 years.
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they are paying lower tacks than they paid in 60 years. it seems out just obvious, it's just common sense, that the rich have got to pay moore. you have these republicans who are pledging allegiance to a man called grover norquist. that's absurd. >> how do you assess, therefore, as a former cabinet minister yourself, how do you assess what's going to happen with republicans like speaker john boehner and mitch mcconnell? how does the president persuade them to lay down their pledges to grover norquist and commit to the nation? >> well, ultimately the president is not going to persuade them. ultimately the voters have to persuade them. i think john boehner and a few others in the republican party have got to tell eric cantor and paul ryan and michele bachmann and a lot of the tea partiers in that party, if you continue to insist that taxes are not going
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to be increased on the rich, we are not going to ever gain or regain control of the senate. we're going to lose control of the house in 2014, 2016. we're going to become a permanent minority party because it makes no sense to most americans. >> hit them where it hurts. professor robert reich, thank you. next, how far will the president go in the showdown against john mccain. but first, hampton pearson has the cnbc market wrap. good afternoon. >> good afternoon. we saw stocks move lower again on more wall street fears of going over the fiscal cliff. the dow losing 28 points, the s&p down 2, the nasdaq closing down 9 points. that's it from cbs, first in business worldwide. [ male announcer ] this is steve. he loves risk.
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the president is now back at the white house after visiting storm damaged areas of new york following the impact of hurricane sandy and waiting for him as ever is mike viqueira who is there on the lawn. mike, let me start with this. what has been the white house reaction, if any, to mitt romney's gifts comments and explaining his shellacking at the presidential election? >> reporter: what are we only ten days out the election? >> we are. >> reporter: i think from a political standpoint, politics never ends in this town. they are perfectly welcome to have mitt romney double down on speaking for republicans. the whole 47% debacle that cost him momentum during the election. that's one of the reasons you saw a possible 2016 contender in bobby jindal quickly knock down those comments. other than that, i think there's sort of a what do you expect him to say. he's got to have some excuse to some of the donors that sent him thousands of their hard-earned
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dollars. jay carney was asked about this directly on the way to new york city. he held his gaggle. we listened to the audio in the briefing room. he cited things like college loans, allowing young people to stay on their parents' health plan as part of the obama care law that was passed by the president, that signature achievement. if you want to call these gifts, that's fine. they would define them as helping the middle class and doing exactly what the president said he was going to do. so they're happy to defend the president, not that he needs defense at this point. >> right. now, the president on wednesday sounded as if he were ready for a serious fight with senator john mccain and others over this issue of benghazi, but is he? is he really ready for that? >> reporter: i think there are two aspects to this. first of all, there is genuine indignation and umbrage that susan rice is being rhetorically bruted about here by john mccain and lindsey graham and other republicans who have come out harshly against her in that
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appearance she made on "meet the press" and elsewhere days after the september 11th attacks because she was by the cia's own admission relaying the information, the latest intelligence, as provided by the cia. many people obviously have problems with the way this went down, with the way information was disseminated, and that's still being hashed out and it will continue to be hashed out when we're likely to see the former director of cia, david petraeus, on the hill behind closed doors. whether or not they actually go through with the susan rice nomination to succeed hillary clinton, we don't know at this point. i certainly think that they would not shy away from the fight if they thought that susan rice was the best person for that nomination. >> did you not get the impression yesterday, mike, that that was the implication of the president's assertion that he really does want to appoint her and he will push it through? >> well, you know, that was a lot of the chatter behind closed doors leading up to the president's very passionate defense of her yesterday.
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you know, it's no secret that john kerry not only was interested in that job in 2008 after the election but remains interested in that job. so it remains to be seen now. there's a lot of talk for john kerry going down to the defense department. >> indeed. nbc's mike viqueira. thanks so much. we'll be right back to "clear the air." ah. fire bad! just have to fire roast these tomatoes.
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oh, nice hands! chest bump. ugh! good job, man. nice! okay, halftime. now, this is my favorite play. oh! i'm wide open. oh, fumble. fumble. don't want to fumble any of these. [ male announcer ] share what you love, with who you love. kellogg's frosted flakes. it's up... and it's good! good?! they're grrreat! it's time now to clear the air. and now we know that the presidential election was not a battle of ideas, but according to mitt romney, a battle over christmas, in particular the giving of gifts. you see, many of us might have been tempted to believe that for a man as inconsistent and two-faced as mitt romney he didn't really mean the things that he said during the campaign. like when he was captured on secret video calling half the population victims and scroungers. when he sounded like he wanted to subject women to the soths
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social policies of the 1950s or when he told immigrants to go quietly into the night and self-deport. these comments are to callus and cruel, it's hard to imagine that anyone saying them would be ethically qualified for the most important position in government. but now we know that mitt romney meant every single word of it. because yesterday away from the heat of the campaign and in a warm and open conversation to his donors, mr. romney shared with them his innermost feelings about the election and why he lost. >> what the president's campaign did was focus on certain members of his base coalition, give them extraordinary financial gifts from the government, and then work very aggressively to turn them out to vote. >> yes, you heard that right, and to drive home his core belief, mr. romney finished with this blistering conclusion. >> the giving away of free stuff is a hard thing to compete with.
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>> it's also hard to compete with such a bogus and contempt tee with us view of america, but there is one man that shares mr. romney's view, almost word for word. he's a man who has embraced the philosophy of aayn rand. here he is in his own words. >> we're going to a majority of takers versus makers in america. we're coming to a country where we're getting more and more takers than makers in america. we need to have more makers and less takers in america because with we have more takers we're denying people of their ability to make the most of their lives. >> the truth is that although mitt romney may be dead to the presidency, paul ryan is very much alive. believes the same things and will probably run for president in 2016. thanks so much for watching this afternoon. chris matthews and
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